January 30, 2013

Inside the Box Score: Veterans lead the way

Maryland (15-6, 3-5 ACC) color="White">71
Florida State style="font-weight: normal">(12-8, 4-3 ACC) color="White">73

Donald L. Tucker Center, Tallahassee, Fla.

color="White">UMD color="White">FSU
FG% 49.1 45.8
3-PT. FG% 40.0 29.4
FREE THROWS 13/18 24/31
Dez Wells (UMD) 19
Michael Snaer (FSU) 19
Alex Len, Shaquille Cleare (UMD) 5
Michael Snaer (FSU) 4
Dez Wells, Nick Faust (UMD) 3
Okaro White, Michael Snaer (FSU) 3
Dez Wells (UMD) 2
Okaro Wihte, Montay Brandon (FSU) 2

"We just kind of panicked and went towards the ball and left Snaer open. You knew he was going to make it. He's made a lot of big ones."

-- Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon on Snaer's game-winner


FSU had a season-low six turnovers in the game.


The Seminoles scored 19 points off of 16 Maryland turnovers.


Maryland out-rebounded FSU 36-20 in the game.

Top performers

  • Michael Snaer: Scored a team-high 19 points, including the game-winning three. Also led the team with four rebounds and three assists.

  • Okaro White: Had 14 points, three assists, three rebounds, and a pair of steals. White went 10-for-10 from the free-throw line.

  • Dez Wells: Pushed Maryland's offense all night with a team-high 19 points. Hit 2 of 3 three-pointers, had three assists and two steals.

Veteran players lead the way

The veteran trio of Michael Snaer, Ian Miller and Okaro White combined for 43 points on Wednesday night against Maryland.

Snaer of course led the way with a team-high 19 points, including the game-winning three. White was right there with 14 points, 10 of which came at the free-throw line, and Miller added 10 points.

"They really gave us major contributions and leadership," head coach Leonard Hamilton said. "Obviously Michael's been accustomed (to it), Okaro stepped up got his free throws and was a lot more aggressive, and then Ian who has not practiced all week…so for him to come out and give us 10 points and that leadership on the play on the floor, I thought really made a big difference in the game."

Miller added a pair of assists to his 10 points, one of which was to Snaer for the final bucket. As the junior guard stumbled he found the senior all alone for the win.

A bone bruise to his foot has slowed his scoring this season, but Miller has done a good job the past two games distributing to his teammates.

"Ian is a very instinctive player," Hamilton said. "He has good feel for the game. He's extremely confident. He's on the few guys that can ride a bicycle and not practice all week and then come in and make the kind of plays he's making."

In addition to hitting the game-winning shot, Snaer led the team in rebounds with four, hit 3 of 6 three-point shots and set the tone early for his team with his passing. He had three assists in the game

"With a team that's not really as in sync as it should be, he's had to become a part facilitater, a go-to guy and a leader on the floor," Hamilton said. "That's a little overwhelming. It's unfair, and Michael is competitive, he's emotional and he wants us to be successful so bad. Sometimes it can challenge you, and sometimes you can want it so bad and try so hard that sometimes you don't always use good judgment. I thought that tonight he was good."

Ojo finally slams it home

It has been painful to watch 7-foot-1 freshman [db]Michael Ojo at times this season. The big man from Lagos, Nigeria has shown all the promise in the world, but has yet to fully put it together.

He came awfully close to putting it together on Wednesday night against the Terrapins. Ojo played a career-high 14 minutes in easily the best night of his young career.

The 290-pound center finished the game with three rebounds, a block, a steal and most importantly two points on his first-career slam dunk.

"It feels good," Ojo said with relief. 'The first dunk of the season. It was getting too long without getting a dunk."

Ojo has had plenty of chances to rock the rim this season, but hasn't quite been able to do it until the first half against Maryland.

With Terrance Shannon sidelined for the foreseeable future, Ojo gave FSU some very valuable minutes in the paint against a Maryland team that has size to spare.

"He came in and played big minutes for us," Snaer said. "He came in and knocked some people on the floor, got some big-time rebounds, came over and helped on defense, blocked some shots, especially at the end of the half. We needed that. We needed guys to step up and play with confidence and that's something that he did tonight."

It was the second straight game that Ojo has played double-digit minutes, after playing 11 minutes against Miami. Hamilton said he's finally starting to see the things Ojos shows in practice translate to the games for his big man.

"Tonight for whatever reason he was more relaxed," Hamilton said. "He has good hands but he's been fumbling the ball because he's so anxious. He's really relaxed now. He was much more relaxed, he gave us some big rebounds."

FSU takes care of the basketball

The most telling stat for FSU in it's win over Maryland was a season-low six turnovers. The Terrapins shot 49.1 percent from the floor, had a plus-16 advantage in the rebound column, yet came away with nothing as they turned the ball over 16 times.

With just six turnovers, FSU added 14 assists in the game.

"I think a much higher level of focus and concentration and I also think we did a little better job scripting things for them," Hamilton said.

Maryland scored just five points in the game off of FSU turnovers. Hamilton said the 14 assists on 22 made shots was a product of giving his young team less choices with the basketball.

"We were a little more specific," he said. "We kept it in an offensive system that we thought would give us a chance to control the ball and get to the foul line, and not put them in some positions where they had to make some decisions where we have not been consistently making as well as we should."

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